Thanks to the power of social media, a mother and daughter have finally been reunited after 27 years.
Katheryn Deprill, also known as the "Burger King Baby," is now reunited and getting to know her birth mother, Cathy Pochek, 44, after she reached out for people on Facebook to help find the mother.
On NBC's TODAY Show Thursday, the two women cried as they publicly shared their emotional experience. The mother-daughter duo was also joined by Brenda Hollis, Katheryn's adoptive mother.
In their television interview, Deprill and Pochek discussed what it was like to reunite.
"It was very exciting, just lots of emotions," Deprill said. "And actually, it was kind of awkward." Once the women hugged, they felt more comfortable.
"I was extremely nervous," the birth mother, Pochek said. "I knew I was at the advantage, because I had seen interviews that she had done, and I was just so proud of her, and how articulate she was in expressing her feelings, and grateful for her mom for a beautiful childhood that she gave her."
When Katheryn Deprill was found at a Burger King restaurant in Lehigh Valley, PA on September 15, 1986, she was left in the bathroom, swaddled up in a red sweater. Brenda and Carl Hollis adopted the baby, and at the age of 12, they revealed the little girl's birth story while working on a family tree project for school.
For years, Deprill longed to find her biological mother and with the encouragement of her adoptive mother, she turned to social media for help.
"I said, 'Why don't you put it on Facebook just for fun and see what happens?' Never in a million years did we expect this to happen," Hollis recalled.
On the second day of March, Deprill posted a photo of herself on Facebook holding up two pieces of paper that shared her birth story. She asked for the public to help find her biological mother.
"Please help me find her by sharing my post," the post read. "Maybe she will see this."
Over 33,000 people shared the post and with their help, Pochek came across her daughter's photo as well. The birth mother reached out to an attorney who connected the two women and they finally met for the first time on March 24.
Revealing her side of the Burger King Baby story, Pochek shared that while on a spring break trip at the age of 16, she was raped, but never told anyone, not even the police. She kept her pregnancy a secret and never brought her baby to a hospital because she feared that she would questioned. Instead, she gave birth to the baby all by herself in her bedroom, then left Katheryn at the Burger King bathroom.
Pochek understood that her choice to come forward would probably cause her to be judged and criticized, however, she felt it was important for her to share her story.
"If we can help some other girl who is in the situation that I was in, it's worth a little bit of judgment that people might bring upon us," the birth mother shared. "If it's just one girl that we can help, it's worth it."
Deprill is now a mother of three, while Pochek is married and has a 23-year-old stepson.
In addition to their reunion, the two women were astonished at the coincidences they have found in each others' lives. Both mother and daughter are emergency medical technicians. They drive the same make and color car and surprisingly, they almost have the same name, just spelled differently: Catherine Anne and Katheryn Ann. Their oddest coincidence, however, may be that Pochek babysat Deprill's husband when he was young.